Monday, September 5, 2011

More Attacks on Public Workers - This time Post Office

 Today's NY Times on the Post Office catastrophe starts out by assuming even mail delivery isn't a guaranteed service that should be subsidized by the government. Let someone suggest that the Wars being funded by the fed should be self-funded. Maybe they need private defense departments to compete. 

Postal Service Is Nearing Default as Losses Mount

The agency is so low on cash that it will not be able to make a $5.5 billion payment due this month and may have to shut down entirely this winter unless Congress acts to stabilize its finances.

Naturally, they blame the union and the pensions:
Missing the $5.5 billion payment due on Sept. 30, intended to finance retirees’ future health care, won’t cause immediate disaster. But sometime early next year, the agency will run out of money to pay its employees and gas up its trucks, officials warn, forcing it to stop delivering the roughly three billion pieces of mail it handles weekly. The causes of the crisis are well known and immensely difficult to overcome....Congress is considering numerous emergency proposals — most notably, allowing the post office to recover billions of dollars that management says it overpaid to its employees’ pension funds.

But the best of all:

Cutting the work force is more difficult. The agency’s labor contracts have long guaranteed no layoffs to the vast majority of its workers, and management agreed to a new no layoff-clause in a major union contract last May. But now, faced with what postal officials call “the equivalent of Chapter 11 bankruptcy,” the agency is asking Congress to enact legislation that would overturn the job protections and let it lay off 120,000 workers in addition to trimming 100,000 jobs through attrition.

So the managers sign a contract in May guaranteeing no layoffs but a few months later are asking to overturn the agreement they signed?

Changing the subject
Here are some items from the listserves worth checking out

From @AnthonyCody (one of the national teacher leaders behind SOS): Business guru Steve Denning Helps us Reframe education reform in surprising ways

This article comes from a post Denning had in Forbes.  Much food for thought in here!

Check out this video of a professor who has studied Sir Michael Barber and the destruction he brought to England. He is amusing and right on point.

Check out Norms Notes for a variety of articles of interest: And make sure to check out the side panel on right for news bits.

1 comment:

  1. The United States is sinking into some sort of First World with bits of Second and Third World problems within its power structures and media.


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